Thoughts from the TD Ameritrade Conference

Noah and I flew down to Orlando last week for the annual TD Ameritrade Institutional Conference. In addition to industry professionals and experts, there was quite a lineup of speakers and entertainment, including Mitt Romney, Sugar Ray Leonard and Huey Lewis & the News. Our key takeaways follow:

  1. Generational Shift – It seemed like every other speaker discussed two main themes. The first theme was how to manage the next generation’s wealth (generation x). The second theme was how to transition your business to the next generation of advisor. TD also is heavily involved in the education of the next generation and a very key supporter of internships at RIA firms. We left the conference feeling very good, knowing that these issues and stresses don’t really apply to us. We are the next generation and don’t necessarily have to worry about transition for many years. This will allow us to stay focused on our clients.
  2. Technology – The technology in our industry is already very good, but it is only getting better. For firms, like ours, that embrace technology, there are tremendous efficiencies and benefits for our clients and team. One of the biggest benefits for clients will be the aggregation of data & information from multiple places into one online portal, accessible from our website.Today, clients are able to access accounts that we manage, outside accounts (like 401ks), banking accounts and liabilities (mortgages) in one secure portal. This information is synced with the underlying institution overnight to give clear and concise real time information. This allows both clients and advisors to make better, more informed investment and planning decisions.
  3. Risk Mitigation – The whole world is still worried about risk in the stock market. There are a number of tools available to help protect all of us from certain levels of risk.  The technology of today can help us implement risk mitigation tools in a very efficient and seamless manner.


Neil Gilliss, MBA, CFP

Neil is the founder Canal Capital Management and serves as the firm’s President and Chief Investment Officer. As head of the Investment Committee, he focuses his attention on the firm’s overall asset allocation.

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